The Best in Islam #03 – Business (Part 1 of 3)
Channel: Bilal Philips
File Size: 23.51MB
Salam Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh like to welcome you to another episode of our series, the best in Islam. As in the previous episodes, we'll be looking at what Allah and His Messenger have declared for us to be the best, the best in our actions, the best people, the best in our interactions, our society, and elements of the world in which we live. In this episode, in particular, we'll be looking at the best in business. So much of our lives are connected to business, business, whether we're buying, selling, trading, exchanging, this plays a big part of our lives.
So with regards to business and how business should be conducted,
Allah Most Great and Glorious, said in Surah, Al Israa, 17 Chapter, verse 35. We're awful Kayla either killed tomb was the new bill. Stossel musta. Team, the Alika Hi, Ron, were our senator Willa, give full measure. When you measure and weigh with an accurate balance that is good and better in the end, give full measure
when you measure meaning that when you are engaged in the selling of your product, you should give people what they're paying for.
Don't cheat them. In one way or another. On one occasion, Prophet Muhammad may God's peace and blessings be upon him. He had entered into the marketplace. And a man had a pile of grain that he was selling. And the prophets stuck his hand into the middle of that pile, and he took out some wet grade.
And he asked him what is this?
The man said The rain fell on it during the night. So the Prophet may God's peace and blessings be upon him said so you should have left it as it was. So people will know that it was wet grain rather than covering it with dry grain. So people think that they're buying dry grain. But in fact, what you're putting on the scale is wet grain covered by some dry grain. And of course, wet grain will weigh more than the dry grain. So what are you doing? You're cheating them. And that's why Allah said, Give full measure when you measure and weigh with an accurate balance. Now some people in the marketplace will play with the violence. They don't start from quite zero.
Or it's not giving you an accurate measurement. Yeah, they're putting it on the scale, you're looking at the scale, and you're thinking you're getting what you're paying for. But in fact, you're getting less than what you're paying for. These are the tricks of the trade. And this whole area of business, in fact, is a very dangerous area.
Because people are quick to find loopholes find ways to increase their profits at any cost. It is so common that the Prophet may God's peace and blessings be upon him described traders in general, saying a to jar human food jar, the traders, the business people in the marketplace, they are the most corrupt, the most corrupt element of any society
because of the temptation to cheat when people study marketing
and this is the tool used by the traders, the business people marketing
focused on deception. The best salesman who is the best salesman when you ask those who are in that field, they will say the best salesman is the one who is able to sell snow balls to the Eskimos or sell sand to the desert Arabs. These are the best salespeople because
Common sense tells you a watt Eskimo who's living in the middle of snow would go and buy a snowball. But I was living in the middle of San Juan going back.
But if you're able to get him to buy Sam, feel that he needs to buy yourself, then you are the best salesman, how are you going to do that? You have to deceive him, you have to deceive him.
It's as simple as that. So much of marketing is focused around how to deceive the customer to make that product desirable,
where the customer wasn't even thinking about the product, but you made them feel that they must have this product, their life is incomplete unless they get this product. This is much of advertisement,
all kinds of tricks, etc. Working on your, you know, your psyche or your mind.
When we look at the history of the spread of Islam, so much of Islam was spread by traders, though,
in the attack on Islam, people like to say Islam was spread with the sword, Muslim armies,
fighting, killing, capturing, etc. No, that's not true at all. The vast majority of what is known as the Muslim world today, never saw a Muslim soldier.
It was not by military conquest. Most was by trade. For example, one big country today one of the biggest Muslim countries in the world. Indonesia, never saw a single Muslim soldier come ashore, the traders who came out of
they came and they traded.
They had been doing it for centuries, following the usual practices of deception, cheating, etc. With their products. One year came to the Indonesian people who are buying their products and selling them other things. And they changed.
These traders, were now telling their customers where they were faults in the product, this cloth or this whatever, you know, it's not so good. It has this it has that customers were very surprised why Indonesians are surprised why you're going to be doing that. Because obviously you tell us that there's something not quite good with about it, and that your neighbor has a better product or whatever, so and so then
you're going to lose the sale.
So why would you want to do that?
So when the traders told them well, it's our religion.
So what do you have another religion now? So yes, we changed our religion.
Our this new religion that we're following and says that we're not supposed to cheat. We have to give you the fair amount for what you pay. The Indonesians wanted to, well, what is this religion? Tell us about it. And from that Islam spread through trading, honestly. And that's what Islam calls to honesty in business, that we don't cut corners. We don't cheat. We don't build products. That having them
One of the practices, common practices today in
the automotive industry, for example, is that
they sell you a car, which, if you took that car apart, and you sold the individual parts of the car, it would be three, four or five times the actual cost of the car that you paid. So the manufacturers, they make the biggest profits from spare parts. This is where the biggest profits come. Love to say they don't make profits when they sell you the car. They do, but they have lowered their profits. Because were they selling the car at its market value. Based on the high prices that they've put on the spare parts. It would be many times more expensive. But in order to get you to buy that car, they have brought the price down. So this is the trap. You're trapped. You've bought
that car, and now the parts in the car are not built to last forever. not built to last as long as it possibly can last No. They will put a variety
have parts in there, which are plastic, or not steel, they're aluminum, they're weakened whatever, in order that it would break down at a certain point and they measure it.
They have machines which test, you know, using that part back and forth, up and down, whatever. And they will know at what point it will wear out. And then they'll give you a warranty, this warranty or guarantee will run out when that part runs out. So up until that point, it will last for three years, or to last for five years, certain parts,
it will work fine. But once five years is up, they've tested the part they know once five years is up, it's gonna break down, you now have to go and buy that part. This is all deception. This is all trickery. This is not giving people the value for what they're paying. And this is despised by God.
And this is why a law said, Give full measure. When you measure and weigh with an accurate balance that is good and better. In the end, it is good for you.
Because your trade then becomes righteous, it's good for the society, the people will benefit from what you're producing. And they're not cheated.
And in the end, it will be added to your scale of good deeds, and may help you to go to Paradise to be successful in the life to come. So your business, when you are honest, and you're dealing in this way, from the Muslim perspective, your business, your trade
is worship of God. It's considered a bada, an act of worship, when you do it in a way which has been prescribed by God. So
the best business is the honest business, that we deal with each other in the marketplace, in honesty,
and with that, we're going to take a short break and I will see you after the break. Sir our
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Salaam Alaikum. I'd like to welcome you back to our episode of the best in Islam with regards to business. This is the main theme of this episode. previous segment
we were looking at the mode of business transaction and we quoted the verse from surah Allah surah in which Allah had said give full measure when you measure and weigh with an accurate balance in another verse
in Surah, Al Juma that's the 62nd Surah or chapter, verse nine. Allah says there yeah you Alladhina amanu either new dlhe Salah Timmy Yama Giamatti, first out in the Quran Allah whether will bear the Polycom highroller come in can tomb Tala Moon all believers when the call for prayer is made on Friday. Come to the remote
Burn, serve Allah and stop doing business that is better for you, if only you knew.
So this element
of remembrance of Allah, which we spoke about in previous episodes about the importance of good coming from the remembrance of Allah, Allah tells us on Friday, this is a day for our communal congregational prayer on that day,
at the time of the midday prayer, stop your business and go and pray, it is better for you better in that, you will be reminded of Allah of goodness and righteousness.
So that when you go back to your work,
you will be
more conscious, more aware,
seeking what is better, what is good, this is the purpose of the prayer ultimately, we spoke about that in previous segments. So we said earlier, that one who does his or her business in a way, which is in keeping with the teachings of Islam, then it means that that business itself becomes worship of Allah,
one form of worship of Allah, but there is the actual prescribed formal worship at set times in the day.
And on Friday in particular, that time should not be abused, by avoidance of prayer, because of worldly gain.
So Allah tells the believers, that when the call for prayer is given, stop,
stop your trade. Now, this is not the whole day.
Friday is not a holiday. If people decide to stop businesses in general, the general flow of business and give Friday, as a break day in the week, we call a holiday. It's okay. societies can do that. It's not a must. Because it's really only at the time of that midday prayer, which is now called on Friday salatu Juma
the Friday prayer, it is only at that time that they are commanded to give up all business shut down their businesses and attend. Of course, they're encouraged if the prayer for us or comes the prayer from I'm gonna becomes that they do likewise, Allah doesn't speak about those in the Quran.
But we know that when the time for prayer comes, everybody should but there may be circumstances wherein a business person etc, may be involved in certain deals or whatever. And it may delay them, you know, they're not obliged to stop in the middle of it and go and pray immediately. For Friday, yes. For the other prayers, they're encouraged to wind up the business or go and pray. But if they were delayed, for example, it's possible they can delay the prayer, prayer later because we have a
period of time in which the prayer can be done. The midday prayer can be prayed from the middle of the day, all the way till the afternoon, two hours, three hours, some countries four hours.
So the prayer can be done at any time in that period. Allah doesn't say this stopped the business, when they are done for us or comes when they're done for Mongolia becomes when the Don Frazier comes. He doesn't say this. But he says for Friday, why? Because Friday prayer is only at that time. The Juma if you don't join that Friday prayer, you have missed the prayer. There is no prayer. Otherwise, you may have to do a midday prayer, which can replace it. But you don't get the reward for the Friday prayer. Once you miss it, you have missed it and the reward is far greater than that of a regular midday prayer. So
Allah tells us
that our concern for worship, worship of Allah should be foremost in our minds,
worshiping Allah by obeying Him, with regards to our business, we should know what is involved in the business what we're selling, we should sell it fairly, we should not cheat our customers in that way, then
our practice of business will be blessed. And we will be among the best of the business people in the world, in the sight of God, we may not be the best in the sense of profits, our profits will be less. Because we're not cheating people, our profits will be less, because we do close our business when the time for prayer comes, so we lose out certain opportunities. But we know ultimately, that we will be successful in both this life and the next, our business will be added to our scale of good deeds, when we are honest and fair. And we remember Allah in the course of our business. So
we have, in this episode, looked at two basic concepts from the Quran, which address business on one hand, that we be fair, and just when we are selling our goods, we give people value for money. If there is defects in our product, we inform the people, we don't cover it over, sell it to them, and trick them, we give them the best that we can, we should have and make the best product as the prophet quoted Allah subhanaw taala saying in the law head woman, I had the comb either I'm in I'm Alana Neutrogena. Allah loves from each and every one of you, whenever you do anything, you do it to the best of your ability. So you're making shoes, or you're making cars, you're making beds,
wherever you're making, you should do it the best you can
not do it with the minimum of effort,
because you want to produce more. So if you don't do it the best.
Instead of making only one, you will be able to make 10. So if you sell 10, you will make 10 times the money you would make for one.
But Islam encourages us to do the best. Our customers will be our customers for life, they will know that we are honest. And we have tried to give them the best. They will be loyal customers, because we have sought to do the best and to be as fair as we possibly can. And we also are called to remember that prayer
is more important than anything else.
In particular, the Friday prayer, we have no choice. We must stop our business. Once that call to prayer comes we have to close it and go and pray
the rest of the week, we are encouraged to close the business and go and pray. Because ultimately, the prayer is to make us better business people know that Allah's blessing will be on our business, if we have conducted it in this manner. And with that,
we're going to close this episode.
This episode on business whose contents are not complete. We do have some more guidance from Revelation with regards to the best in business. But for now we're stopping and we hope to see you in our coming episodes in which we will continue to look at goodness in business. Salam Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh barakato